FOUR ARGUMENTS FOR THE ELIMINATiON OF TELEVISION by Jerry Mander

FOUR ARGUMENTS FOR THE ELIMINATiON OF TELEVISION

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A hard-nosed polemic that calls not simply for the end of TV programs but for the outright elimination of the whole technology of television. The conservationist-author insists that TV cannot yield to reform and ticks off its ""dangerous effects"": mental, physiological, ecological, economic, political--""effects that are dangerous to the person, society, and the planet."" Unlike most video critics, Mander is chiefly interested in the tube per se. Evidence is offered to suggest that the light from the screen causes damage to human cells and eyes and at times even induces epilepsy among non-epileptics. The programs themselves have a hypnotic effect. ""We have lost control of our minds,"" says the author. An unusual charge is that the indistinctness or ""coarse imagery"" of the TV picture excludes all subtlety and nuance from the medium and forces directors to dwell on the ""grosser end of the human emotional spectrum."" Preachy and didactic, the book is heavy going at times, with such terms as ""eidetic image"" and ""Tantric visualization."" Still, the arguments are persuasive, almost compelling, and above all interesting and unusual. In the end, the author admits the dominant position of TV in our society and concedes he has no earthly idea of how to bring about its demise. It might be termed an exercise in futility were it not for the intriguing notions it offers.

Pub Date: March 3rd, 1978
ISBN: 0688082742
Publisher: Morrow